by Carl, 12/04/2013, 7:09 AM

I don’t really have very many feels one way or the other about college football. But Andrew at NPI has a nice piece on Steve Sarkisian going to USC.

Washington’s highest-paid employee is headed south for a more lucrative job.

Steve Sarkisian, who was hired to turn around a winless University of Washington football program five years ago, acknowledged earlier today that he has accepted the head coaching position at the University of Southern California, which is one of the most elite schools in the country and a traditional powerhouse in the Pacific 12 Conference (formerly the Pac-10). Sarkisian was an assistant coach for seven years at USC prior to being hired by UW, so his desire to return his understandable.

But the timing and circumstances of his departure are not becoming of a man who claimed for half a decade to bleed purple and gold.

It’s tough, perhaps, for a city and a state to put much civic pride in an institution with a mercenary at the top. Perhaps that why we cling the game with a spirit of amateurism in the rest of the game.

5 Responses to “Sark”

1. Pete spews:

Sorry, but this is asinine. Coaches change jobs (or lose them) all the time; five years is as long as anyone’s lasted in the UW job in 20 years. USC is a better (and higher-paying) job, UW fans who still think it’s 1991 notwithstanding. Coaches are expected to bleed their schools’ colors if they’re to convince kid athletes (and their parents) that they’ll be around in five years, an impossible promise which is a requirement of the job. And USC offered it to him at least once before (when they hired Lane Kiffin instead) and he turned them down. UW and its fans have nothing to complain about.

And yes, it’s a business – a huge business – where coaches who don’t win are as disposable as the players. Is it asinine that state institutions of higher learning, in this country but no other, are in the sports entertainment industry? Of course. But that’s not Sarkesian’s fault.

As for “clinging to amateurism,” grow the fuck up. They don’t pay the players much (a stipend and a college scholarship, which isn’t nothing but pales next to the revenue the good ones generate) for the same reason Amazon doesn’t pay its warehouse employees much: because they make more money that way. Guilt or sentimentalism has nothing to do with it.

If an executive left Amazon for a better job at Google nobody would be writing this sort of treacle; they’d wish him well in his better job, and move on to the next guy.

2. No Time for Fascists spews:

I don’t have a clue about football but it is an interesting dilemma between Loyalty and Career Advancement/Greed. Just as Pete said, in our culture, if a better opportunity opens up, take it. There is no loyalty to workers or to bosses, when it comes to a paycheck.

3. Roger Rabbit spews:

@1 Don James didn’t.

4. Roger Rabbit spews:

Let’s set aside the pretenses here. College football players are paid professionals, too. It’s been that way for as long as I can remember.

5. ArtFart spews:

But…but…butbutbutbutbut….California’s broke.

Err….isn’t it??????